Boston Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund reaches $5 million milestone; makes 18 new grants

Total grantmaking rises to nearly $1.3 million, as weekly series provides ongoing support for nonprofits

April 13, 2020

Boston – The Boston Foundation continued its efforts to support Greater Boston nonprofits at the forefront of the region’s COVID-19 assistance efforts, announcing 18 more grants from the COVID-19 Response Fund. The series of $25,000 general operating support grants brings the total given to Greater Boston nonprofits to date to $1,275,000 to 51 grantees.  

Fundraising for the Fund has continued along with the grantmaking – large and small donors have now donated more than $5 million to the Fund, allowing for continuing nonprofit support.

“This is an ongoing crisis, and it will require an ongoing effort to meet it,” said Paul S. Grogan, President and CEO of the Boston Foundation. “We will continue to do everything we can to support those nonprofits to continue their work on behalf of those in need, and we will continue to work with our generous community of donors to provide support.”

Round three grantees from the COVID-19 Response Fund include: African Community Economic Development of New England, Bethany Health Care Center, Inc., Brookview House, Inc., Cape Verdean Community Unido/DBA Cape Verdean Association of Boston, Codman Square Neighborhood Development Corporation, Eritrean American Civic Association Center Inc. (EACA), Greater Boston Chinese Golden Age Center, Inc., Healing Abuse Working for Change (HAWC), Health Law Advocates, Hildebrand Family Self-Help Center, InnerCity Weightlifting, Massachusetts Center for Native American Awareness, Neighbors United for a Better East Boston (NUBE), Nuestra Comunidad Development Corporation, Refugee and Immigrant Assistance Center, RESPOND, Inc., Transition House, Inc., and Urban Guild, Inc.

One area of focus in this round of grantees has been an increase in support for organizations that serve victims of domestic violence. Published reports have highlighted a rise in domestic violence cases in Boston and other cities nationwide, and as the Boston Globe reported Friday, there are concerns that numbers of abuse and neglect cases are being undercounted in the current crisis.

The Boston Foundation will continue to evaluate its grantmaking in conjunction with other funds to ensure that our grants support organizations and populations that are less likely to receive funds from other sources, such as the elderly, immigrants (including the undocumented), those in extreme poverty, incarcerated and returning citizens and those struggling with domestic violence. To date, 27 of the 51 grantees have been led by people of color, as the Foundation continues to seek to improve racial equity in the relief and recovery efforts.

Overall, the Fund has received nearly 600 requests for funding to date; as the fund is considering applications on a rolling basis, eligible nonprofits need only apply once.

Fundraising Update

The Boston Foundation welcomes two new major donors to the Fund this week: The DentaQuest Partnership for Oral Health Advancement and the People’s United Community Foundation.

They join a roster that includes the Nike Foundation, Eastern Bank Charitable Foundation, BJ’s Charitable Foundation, Wells Fargo, Comcast, Plymouth Rock Foundation, Tufts Health Plan Foundation, Cove Hill Partners, Intercontinental Exchange, IR+M Charitable Fund, Target, Citizens Charitable Foundation and TripAdvisor Foundation, as well as nearly 70 donor-advised fundholders at the Boston Foundation and hundreds of donors who have given to the Fund by check and credit card.

The fund has also received significant support from family and private foundations, including the Ruby W. and Lavon P. Linn Foundation and many others without whom this continued source of general operating support for vitally important grantees would not be possible.

Round 3 Grantees List:

Each grantee receives a $25,000, one-time general operating support grant from the COVID-19 Response Fund. Note: A link to a running list of all grantees from the COVID-19 Response Fund can be found at

African Community Economic Development of New England (ACEDONE), Boston: to assist East African refugees and immigrants resettling in the Boston area during the pandemic, by providing support for food, household expenses and income stability.

Bethany Health Care Center, Inc., Framingham: to provide support to care for the health needs of elders served at Bethany Health Care Center, 75% of whom are low-income.

Brookview House, Inc., Dorchester: to provide support for emergency needs of women and children who are domestic abuse survivors experiencing or at risk of homelessness. Emergency support includes rental assistance, gift cards, MBTA passes, kits with cleaning supplies, health and hygiene products such as diapers, feminine supplies, toiletries, soap, medical supplies and food.

Cape Verdean Community Unido/Cape Verdean Association of Boston, Dorchester: to support Cape Verdean elders, undocumented immigrants, and families with assistance meeting basic and medical needs, as well as translation services.

Codman Square Neighborhood Development Corporation, Dorchester: to address resident-identified support needs of their low/moderate-income tenants and constituents., including telehealth services to address mental health needs exacerbated by the COVID-19 crisis.

Eritrean American Civic Association Center Inc. (EACAC), Boston: to support people of Eritrean descent in the Boston area, including newly immigrated, elderly and out-of-school populations, with housing, transportation, medical care, childcare, translation services, and food security.

Greater Boston Chinese Golden Age Center, Inc., Chinatown: to support the elderly nutrition program, serving an average of 3500 freshly made culturally appropriate meals per day, to seniors who live in all Boston neighborhoods and eight cities and towns in Massachusetts. 

Healing Abuse Working for Change (HAWC), Salem: to support services for victims of domestic violence in Essex County including intensive mobile advocacy, safety planning, emotional support, case management, legal services, support for their children, as well as information and referrals to resources.

Health Law Advocates, Boston: to provide support to help disadvantaged Boston-area residents access health care, including children, immigrants, individuals with disabilities, and low-income individuals.

Hildebrand Family Self-Help Center, Cambridge: to provide support for 135 homeless families; 405 children and adults in emergency shelter throughout the Boston area. Support includes food and disinfectant supplies. 

InnerCity Weightlifting, Boston: to support their students, low-income previously incarcerated men, and their families with rent and other basic needs.

Massachusetts Center for Native American Awareness, Danvers: to provide funds for utility bills, food, and other necessities, for vulnerable Native American elders and families who are experiencing temporary financial hardship.

Neighbors United for a Better East Boston (NUBE), East Boston: to support East Boston residents with immediate needs including food access, household sanitation, housing stability, and interpretation/translation support to access public services.

Nuestra Comunidad Development Corporation, Roxbury: to support residents, comprised of seniors, formerly homeless, children, and undocumented families, with rental assistance, groceries and domestic violence services.

Refugee and Immigrant Assistance Center, Boston: to provide refugees and immigrants with behavioral health and case management services during the current COVID-19 pandemic.

RESPOND, Inc., Somerville: to increase support of hotline and basic needs services for victims of domestic violence isolated with their abusers due to the COVID-19 crisis.

Transition House, Inc., Cambridge: to increase health, safety, basic needs, and virtual case management/support services for survivors of domestic violence.

Urban Guild, Inc. (The Guild), Dorchester: to support community residents’ efforts to obtain basic needs/services including groceries, mobility to essential appointments, utility support, and hygienic supplies.